El Santo on Robot 6: Webcomics are for the children

New article at Robot 6 is up! Here, I discuss Stripped‘s subtext about comic strips and childhood, and I theorize how Penny Arcade‘s recent moves may be steering things that direction in the world of webcomics.

EDIT: Also they decided to publish my review of Pole Dancing Adventures, a webcomic about pole dancing. On the same day I did that piece on kids’ webcomics.

WHEEEEEEEEE!

Lauren Davis talks up “51 Eisner-worthy webcomics”

Eisner Awards, eh? What is this malarkey! Some people are bechuffed — bechuffed, I say! — about some of the candidates that were passed over this year! Why, it’s enough to incite a riot!

… OK, so no one is bechuffed. They’re barely even bedraggled. I mean… there’s like a dozen comic-related award ceremonies this year.

But that doesn’t stop Lauren Davis from listing 51 Awesome Webcomics that she believes are deserving of recognition come Eisner time.

The category for Best Digital Comic launched in 2005 and it’s always been perplexing for avid followers of webcomics. We’ve hoped that the category would be an opportunity to highlight independent comics by lesser known creators and in some years, it has done an excellent job of doing just that. However, the nominees tend to include creators who have strong ties to the world of print comics, and sometimes digital offerings by big-name creators edge out people who have been working in webcomics for years. (Case in point, Joss Whedon and Fabio Moon took home the 2008 Eisner for Best Digital Comic for the Dark Horse digital release of Sugarshock!)

You dare impugn the name of the Honorable Master Joss Whedon, Ms. Davis? What, are you just asking for a thousand browncoats to be mailed your way? Because if you are … can … can you loan me one? It’s sorta chilly out here. My size is Extra Large.

Lauren Davis’ list is quite comprehensive, ranging from JL8 to Unsounded to Dresden Codak to Something Positive to… well… there are 51 of them. Read it for yourself, homies!

(Full disclosure, Ms. Davis mentions this humble site in her piece. Thanks for the shout-out!)

Random Quickies: Paradox Space

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So… sick of Homestuck yet? Well, you’re about to get sicker. Andrew Hussie just launched Paradox Space, a home for canon Homestuck fan comics. And while that sounds like something that could go off the rails, Hussie is savvy enough to get fan comics from people who know what they’re doing. People like that Paranatural guy. And KC Green. And … I’m not sure what Jonathan Griffiths and J.N. Wiedle do, but it looks alright.

The 2014 Eisner Awards for Best Digital/Webcomic Comics are announced and… oh, *#%@!!! It’s The Oatmeal

So the 2014 Eisner noms were announced today. My new employer, Robot 6, did not make it into the Best Comics-Related Periodical/Journalism category this year (though parent company Comic Book Resources did). Hopefully my coverage of webcomics will be enough to tip the scale next time the awards are considered.

Ehhh? EEHHHHHH?

Anyway, you know what you’re here for. What are the nominees for Best Online Comic this year, El Santo? Well, glad you asked. First of all, it’s now called “Best Digital/Webcomic.” Make up your mind, Eisners! Second, the awards are a pretty dang eclectic mix… and there’s only one here that I recognize.

Incidentally, the Sugarshock-o-Meter is starting to gain sentience, question its existence and purpose in life. Stay Calm and carry on, Sugarshock-o-Meter!

In other news, The Adventures of Superhero Girl by Faith Erin Hicks is up form Best Publication for Kids (ages 8-12) and Best Humor Publication.

Metapost: doing some work for Robot 6

Hello, all. Now that my articles are up, I suppose I can let the cat out of the bag. I will be doing some pieces for Robot 6 for the near future. They were looking to expand their presence in webcomic coverage, and thought I might be a good fit on their site. They gave me a pretty wide net, though, so I may be doing a few reviews that aren’t necessarily webcomic related.

What I am determined to focus on, though, is comics content. I am by no means an insider in any field… but I do like to read a lot. So the topics I’ll be focusing on are stories, artwork, composition, humor… basically all of the stuff I’ve covered here. In fact, longtime Webcomic Overlook readers might find a lot of it overly familiar. I will be covering ground of some webcomics I’ve already reviewed here. I’ve always wanted to revisit some of the webcomics I’ve read, and this gig at Robot 6 is my chance.

I’ll be posting pieces up there four times a week: twice on Monday, and twice on Friday. My debut piece are already up. They cover the following:

  1. YET ANOTHER article discussing Homestuck. (This time talking about its unique “Pesterlog” format.) I sorta wanted to debut discussing the biggest game in town in the webcomics biz.
  2. A review of Stripped. It’s fairly short… shorter than what I usually write up. I’m actually splitting this up into two: part two will probably be out next week.

And there it is! I still plan on putting up reviews here, by the way. (Or as I like to call ‘em, “the new stuff.”) The schedule may be a bit more sporadic from now on, though. (As if it wasn’t already.)

What did you think of STRIPPED?

The Dave Kellett and Frederick Schroeder joint Stripped! hit Kickstarter donators last month. The video was made available last week on iTunes, with the option of getting it on DVD. The movie is filmed in interview style, with a bunch of sit-down chats with comic strip and webcomic luminaries. The narrative takes viewers from the history of comic strips to the newspaper crisis, and provides different viewpoints as to the future of comic strips. Also, Bill Watterson totally drew the poster for it.

But I’ve spoiled too much. What do you, the viewers at home, think of STRIPPED?

News: Amazon buys Comixology

Hat tip to Morgan Wick via Twitter: Amazon buys Comixology.

Amazon has just announced that they will acquire comiXology, a service that offers digital versions of comics from Marvel, DC, and many others.

To date, Comixology offers upwards of 50,000 comics for sale. In 2013, the company launched a self-publishing platform for comics that allows comic creators to upload and sell their own work — a strategy which fits hand-in-hand with Amazon’s own self-publishing efforts for books.

It’s a boost of confidence, I think, that online comics are now considered a profitable medium. Comixology has indeed been doing good business, and the acquisition is a pretty interesting wrinkle in Amazon’s continued quest to expand to the field of entertainment media (what with the Instant Video aspect getting way more press).

The 2013 Reuben nominees were announced… and it’s surprisingly a good list

Let’s face it… very few people had heard of last year’s Reuben winners. It was the second year, and the categories were split into two: Long-Form and Short-Form for Online Comics. While it technically spread the webcomic awards by double, I don’t know many people who’d heard of either Ten Cats (the Short-Form winner) or Untold Tales of Bigfoot (the Long-Form winner). Both comics were alright, by the way.

This year’s nominees, though, are a solid mix. Let’s check out the Reuben noms:

LONG-FORM
Dicebox – by Jenn Manley Lee
Family Man – by Dylan Meconis
Red’s Planet – by Eddie Pittman
Tuki – by Jeff Smith

Of these, the only one I haven’t read is Tuki. And, man, it’s Jeff Smith (Bone, RASL). Of course it’s probably good. I really can’t process these categories through the Sugarshock-o-meter to predict a winner, because I think all four have an equal and very deserving chance of snagging the award.

SHORT FORM
Watson – by Jim Horowitz
Buni – Ryan Pagelow
New Yorker Online – Mike Twohy

… I’ve heard of Buni. Still, I am not opposed to the New Yorker competing in a webcomic category. The New Yorker comics have been upping their online presence as of late, running caption contests and commission works from prominent webcomic types. Watson looks alright… if a little unremarkable.

Still, there’s your Reubens, and the fight over who wins the Long-Form category should be interesting at least!

(h/t Robot 6)

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